The Jungle | KUOW News and Information

The Jungle

Donald Slyter, a resident of The Jungle, a homeless encampment in Seattle believed to have been around since the 1930s. It gets its name from the name for homeless encampments at the time -- hobo jungles.
Credit KUOW Photo/Gil Aegerter

The Jungle is the unofficial name for a sprawling homeless encampment underneath Interstate 5. It's estimated that 300-400 people have set up camps in the area.

The Jungle's was a place so notorious for drugs and violence that Seattle's Fire Department wouldn't respond without a police escort and outreach efforts were few.

The encampment has come under more public scrutiny since a shooting in January 2016 killed two and hospitalized three. Police have arrested three teenagers — ages 13, 16, and 17 — who are believed to have carried out the deadly attack.

Seattle Mayor Ed Murray and King County Executive Dow Constantine declared a state of emergency to combat homelessness in the region in November 2015.

See also:

Out of the Jungle: A special radio documentary about life in, and after, the Jungle.

PHOTOS: This Is Seattle's Notorious 'Jungle'

Heartbreaking dispatches from inside the Jungle

No End In Sight: an investigative project from KUOW about King County's 10-year plan to end homelessness

SPD assistant chief Robert Merner responds to reporter questions in the SODO neighborhood after a shooting on Tuesday night.
KUOW Photo/Jason Pagano

Two people were killed on Tuesday night after a shooting near Airport Way South.

At 7:21 p.m., police received calls about gun fire in a wooded area known as The Jungle. The Jungle is a greenbelt where many homeless people put up tents.  

Sawhorse Revolution designed and built this tiny house, with the intent to donate it to the homeless camp known as Nickelsville. The idea is to have tiny houses rather than tents at this new homeless camp in the Central District.
Courtesy of Alec Gardner

"The Nest," as the students call it, is a serious step up from a tent.

There's no plumbing or electricity, but it's watertight, insulated and has walls and a lock. And it was designed with a homeless person in mind.